“We can feel joy even while having a bad day, a bad week, or even a bad year! …We can feel joy regardless of what is happening—or not happening—in our lives.” – Russell M. Nelson
I love that quote because it reminds me that it is absolutely possible to feel joy whenever we choose to, and regardless of any difficult circumstances we may be facing in our lives…we always have a choice to feel joy.
I think one thing that is important to understand is what it means to have joy. Joy isn’t having everything go exactly as we would like it to – rather it is simply the feeling of peace and confidence that comes from trusting that God is in control of the details of our lives, and feeling confident that if we do our best to do our part that He will guide us through the journey we need to travel in order to end up in a place that will bring us the greatest happiness…then feeling truly grateful every day of our lives for that knowledge.
I believe that is true. I believe in the words spoken by George Q. Cannon when he said, “No matter how serious the trial, how deep the distress, how great the affliction, God will never desert us. He never has, and He never will. He cannot do it. It is not His character [to do so]. … He will [always] stand by us. We may pass through the fiery furnace; we may pass through deep waters; but we shall not be consumed nor overwhelmed. We shall emerge from all these trials and difficulties the better and purer for them.”
None of us like going through hard times – I certainly don’t. There is not a lot that is fun about going through difficult and sometimes heartbreaking things. But when those times come, and they always do, we need to remember that we always have the ability to choose to still feel joy.
Some things that help remind me I can choose to have joy, even during difficult times are to:
- Make a list of our blessings we have in our lives.
- Do something to make someone else happy.
- Focus on all the positive things around us.
- Think through all the potentially positive things that could possibly come as a result of the currently difficult circumstances surrounding us.
- Recognize the blessings happening even in the midst of the difficult time.
- Go outside and look at the beauty around us. Breathe in, and then let it out.
- Feel grateful that God loves us enough to help us become the best person we can be, even when it must be incredibly hard for Him as our Heavenly Father to see us hurting so badly, yet He loves us enough to allow us to grow through overcoming our own trials.
- Remind ourselves that that everything happens for a good reason and it will ultimately help lead us to eternal happiness if we put all of our trust in God.
Finally, we have to remember that there are angels all around us who are also cheering us on and doing all they can to support us and comfort us and help us along our journey. We are loved more than we could ever imagine.
“Keep loving. Keep trying. Keep trusting. Keep believing. Keep growing. Heaven is cheering you on today, tomorrow, and forever.” – Jeffrey R. Holland
Have a great weekend everyone!
~Amy Rees Anderson